MY INTERVIEW WITH AUTHOR CATHY JOHNS
What’s your name and what genre would you consider your books to be?
My name is Cathy Johns, I’m a Kenyan based Author who was raised in a small village in Rift Valley, Kenya.
I write contemporary romance with a bit of erotica in it.
Tell me about your book. How did you come up with that (story, angle, idea)?
Beautiful Allure is my first debut. It came at a time I was dealing with so much (personal stuff) and it came to me like a dream. At first I thought it was my mind working overtime but when I sat down and wrote that first word, I knew I had to get the words written down plus I needed to believe that we all deserve to be happy and be loved.
How did you get interested in writing this particular genre (historical novels, mysteries, sci-fi, children’s books, etc.)?
I was one of those students who’d read a novel under the desk while the teacher went on about teaching. I read countless books by Danielle Steel and that’s where my love for books and writing started.
What kind of research did you do for this book?
I had to research about being a computer guru, about adoption process, Alzheimer’s and its side effect… Oh, and about strip clubs and the kind of music played in such clubs.
Can you tell me about your Series?
This series is called ‘A Beautiful Kind of Series” it’s about four friends going through their own struggles, even with the much money they have, they are all broken but everything is beautiful when they meet their significant others.
There are four books in the series. Watch out for the other three books in the series and more other books coming your way.
And all my stories are based in Africa.
Do you have a favorite book out of this series?
I can’t say cause it will feel like I’m choosing between my babies, but what I’ve got to say is that, each character holds a special in my heart because they have taught me something along the way.
Where did you get the inspiration/idea for your series?
I can say from that one dream I had, the series came to life. And my characters were born.
What kind of research did you do for this book?
From what I’ve mentioned earlier, I can say I searched on how to be a goddamn lawyer, a good investor, being a chef cause I’m rusty on that department and the rest, I’m still doing the googling.
Was it always meant to become a series?
At first, no. But in the middle of writing the first book, the other characters couldn’t shut up, kept me awake drafting their stories and I’m glad they did cause I enjoy talking and listening to them.
What’s a typical working day like for you? When and where do you write? Do you set a daily writing goal?
I work fulltime at a property and development company, so my writing hours are minimal. I write during my lunch break and when I get home after I’m being done being whoever they want me to be, I spend at least two hours getting some writing done.
Do you have a new book in the making and if so, what’s the name of your upcoming book?
New book, let’s see. I have a Christmas short story hoping to be released before Christmas time and second book in the series which I’m hoping to release mid January 2019.
How important are character names to you in your books? Is there a special meaning to any of the names?
Very important. What I can say is that, I never choose a name for my characters without finding out their meaning. Its something I learned from my mom) and being an African, we have a habit of calling our kids names that will have you admit someone to a pyscho ward. So, names must have meanings to me.
Where do your ideas come from?
Past experiences, looking at the people around me, and what every girl dreams of when it comes to finding love.
Is there a genre that you’ve been wanting to experiment with?
Yes. I won’t mention it but look out for Ruby Rogue come 2019. This will be my new pen name under that genre though Cathy Johns will continue writing her Contemporary romance novels.
What is the hardest part of writing for you?
When a different character decides to have a safe and its not the story you should be working on. Hell, I have six unfinished books cause the characters wants to be heard and its not their turn yet. Especially Chase and Ace. Two characters from two different series.
What do you think of book trailers? Do you have a trailer or do you intend to create one for your own book?
I love them, makes one want to read the book. I don’t have one at the moment but I intend to have one created soon.
What do you consider to be your best accomplishment?
Hitting publish as an Indie Author and knowing I’ll get to push it again and again. And having these amazing readers who wants more African stories from me.
What’s the best thing about being an author?
Knowing that I can create fictitious characters and have them touch someone else’s life.
Where do you see yourself in 10 years?
That’s a hard one but I got to say, me working hard will have me hitting the NYT, USA today, become a motivational speaker, and guide those who are inspiring to become writers/authors become better than I am.
Have you always liked to write?
I can say yes. A few years back, I fell into depression (I’m not ashamed to admit that) and my therapist gave me a pen and a notebook book and said, Cathy, if you ever need someone to talk to, make these two items your best friends. And since I’m an introvert, I did just that.
What writing advice do you have for aspiring authors?
Never ever give up. Believe in yourself and Write until someone gets to read your story.
If you didn’t like writing books, or weren’t any good at it, what would you like to do for a living?
I’d be working on my farm and taking care of my farm animals.
Do you read reviews of your book(s)? Do you respond to them, good or bad? How do you deal with the bad?
Yes, I do read reviews. Yes, I do respond to them whether good or bad.
For the bad ones, I try to work on where the reviewer saw my faults cause I’ve got to admit, I’m still learning and everyday I’m learning something new.
What is your least favourite part of the writing / publishing process?
When your editor sends you the manuscript with a few highlighted paragraphs saying “not needed, delete” and you’re like, those were my favorite part of my writing.
What are you working on now?
I’m working on my third book in A Beautiful Kind of Series “Beautifully Scarred” and can’t wait for people to meet Leo and Cecilia.
Can you give us a few tasty morsels from your work-in-progress?
I got to admit this book is tearing me apart.
Its about a woman who fell in love with a man who’d later turn her life into a leaving hell, an abusive marriage but she his it so well for years until one day, she wasn’t so lucky when she almost lost her life only to wake up in ICU, all broken.
She gets to meet this guy, (I would fall for Leo if he was real) through her boss. The guy is a lawyer and represents her in court since the abusive wouldn’t set her free, bribed every lawyer who tried to take on her case.
Cecilia doesn’t believe she deserves happiness and what she deemed broken in her, Leo saw it as a precious gift to him. And like they say…
You’ll meet these two early 2019.
Why did you choose to write in your genre? If you write in more than one, how do you balance them?
Because I’m a hopeless romantic.
And I believe all my book boyfriends are real in another life (kidding).
Where did your love of books come from?
Danielle Steel books.
Do you have any favorite authors or favorite books?
I can’t seem to choose cause my list is endless but I can say it all started with Danielle Steel and the rest followed.
Of all the characters you have created, which is your favourite and why?
I can say Leo “Beautifully Scarred”. Why? He reminds me of someone who loved me at my darkest moment. Someone who owns my heart.
Does writing energize or exhaust you?
It energizes me. Getting lost in my writing, wanting to know what will happen the minute I write the next word gives me some kind of high a bottle of wine can’t quench.
What is your writing Kryptonite?
A Strong, loving and protective Alpha male with tattoos.
Do you try more to be original or to deliver to readers what they want?
I try to be original.
What other authors are you friends with, and how do they help you become a better writer?
I have many but I’ll tell you this, I ask question, a share my writing with them and listen to their advice on how I should go about a certain paragraph or character.
If you were writing a book about your life, what would the title be?
Very simple: YOU ARE ENOUGH.
What question have you always wanted to be asked in an interview? How would you answer that question?
Why are my stories based in Africa/Kenya?
Because I want people to have a feel of something new, know about my country, the Alpha male and Strong heroines, different tourist attraction from the ones they see on National Geographic.
Trust me, I can tell you all about USA especially New York from all the books I’ve read.
Where can your fans find you and follow??
They can stalk me on:
Thank you for taking your time to do this interview ❤️
Thank you for having me ❤